What is Sous-Vide?
Sous vide is french for ‘under vacuum’ and describes a method to cook food at low temperatures inside a vacuum sealed pouch. Sous-Vide was invented in France in the 1970s by chef Georges Pralus of the restaurant Troisgros as a result of the search for the perfect way to cook foie gras.
Although the Sous-Vide method is gaining popularity with non-professional chefs, there has not been an affordable solution that had all the advantages of a laboratory immersion circulator. This changes in 2009 as Addelice has manufactured a special cooking equipment, released the swid – the world’s first immersion circulator dedicated to Sous-Vide cooking.
Cooking results are all about the right temperature and timing. With conventional cooking methods timing is crucial since the applied temperature is usually significantly higher than the desired core temperature of the product. A perfect medium-rare steak, for example, has a core temperature of 55ºC while a hot pan can have up to 300ºC. As a consequence, the degree of doneness will never be ideal – the outer layers of the food will always be more cooked than the core.
In Sous-Vide cooking, temperature is much more important than time. Food is usually cooked at and not above the desired core temperature which results in a uniformity of cooking which is unmatched by any other method.
P reservation of aroma and flavour.
Everybody knows how good and mouth watering cooking can smell. Unfortunately this also means that all those aromas you can smell are in the air and not inside the product where they should be.
With the Sous-Vide method, food is vacuum sealed inside special cookable pouches. Everything that is put in the bag will stay in the bag until it is cut open after cooking. Weight loss during cooking is a lot lower in Sous-Vide cooking compared to other methods like slow-roasting in an oven.
Conventional ovens use hot air to heat, which is very inefficient since air is a bad heat conductor. Because of this, air is even used for insulation purposes inside double-glas windows, for example. That is why slow-roasting meat inside conventional ovens uses a lot of energy.
The heat conductivity of water is approximately 23 times higher than that of air. In Sous-Vide cooking, water is used to transfer heat to the product. The absence of air inside the pouch ensures the best possible heat transfer between food and water.
Sous-Vide makes it easy to prepare big quantities of top quality food for individuals and professionals alike. Just prepare and vacuum seal your food, put it in your water bath and take it out when you need it. Cooked products can also be chilled quickly and kept inside the fridge for several days without any significant quality losses.
E ase of use
Sous-Vide cooking is as easy as cooking gets. Just determine the appropriate cooking time for your product, season, vacuum seal your food, set the Swid® to the desired temperature and time and put the pouch inside the water bath.
Your food will never overcook, no matter how long you leave it inside the water bath. It is possible to cook a piece of meat Sous-Vide for several days and it will still be medium-rare if the temperature is set accordingly.
Contrary to popular belief, cooking a piece of meat to the perfect degree of doneness is not art but pure science. All that needs to be done is to evenly heat the food, so that it has the same (desired) temperature everywhere.
You only need to know three things:
1.Type of meat
Every kind of food differs in its ability to transfer heat. Fatty meats have a better heat conductivity than lean meats, for example.
2.Thickness of the product
How fast food is heated in a water bath does not depend on its weight – it only depends on its thickness. Inside a water bath, heat is applied evenly to the product from all sides, therefore the thickness of the product is important in determining the cooking time.
3.Desired degree of doneness
Although doneness is not a scientific term and there is no fixed definition, there is a consensus that rare-medium roughly equals temperatures from 54ºC to 62ºC.
With those three parameters it is easy to determine the minimum cooking time needed to bring the product up to the desired temperature. You can, for example, refer to these tables by Douglas Baldwin or use other tools.
Once you figured out the temperature for your perfect steak, you can reproduce it every single time without any variation.